* This post is written by one of our volunteer guest bloggers - it is not sponsored. *
My name is Elliot Barrington, and like many people living with a disability, it took time for me to mentally and physically accept my injury. I genuinely thought my life was over after a gunshot bullet caused a spinal cord injury in 2005. But once family and friends began to abandon me in my time of need, I felt as if I no longer had a purpose. I wanted to end my life, but something kept telling me to keep going. That something was the fact that I was still able to use my hands, despite losing so much. In time, this allowed me to realise that I not only wanted to survive but to live.
I eventually started working out every day, even though the fact I could no longer do the exercises I was once accustomed too. But I knew the stronger I became, the more independence I would gain; so, I continued to push my mind and body! Sometimes I would challenge myself by dragging my body across my bed, using only my hands and arms. A movement I never used to think twice about as an able-bodied person, yet now have to break it down into tiny individual actions.
Over time I began noticing that I was finding it easier to move my body; enabling me to learn the life skills required to complete daily living tasks. For example, how to transfer from my bed into my wheelchair; wheel around on my own; and venture into my kitchen to make a cup of tea. This newfound level of independence had such a positive impact on my mental health, that I began to feel like myself again. Actually, I felt great. I finally realised I could do whatever I wanted and go wherever I liked. It might take me a little longer now that I use a wheelchair, but I’m completely independent.
Whilst improving my physical and mental health using adaptive workouts, I also discovered a passion for rowing. So much so that I should have been representing my country at the 2020 Paralympics had it not been for the coronavirus outbreak. A disappointment that could have caused my mental health to plummet, but instead pushed me to create Wheels Heals Disabilities - an adaptive fitness service for people like me.
So please get in touch if you are struggling to cope with the physical challenges associated with your disability. Or if you are understandably feeling frustrated by the impact the pandemic is having on your health. It would be a pleasure to help in any way I can. Whether it’s increasing your mobility, building muscle or improving your stamina, I can draw on my own experiences to assist your individual needs. Of course, nothing is going to change overnight, but together we can make a difference during my FREE one to one workout sessions.
All over the world, countless clients are benefiting from services of this kind now that stereotypical fitness services are unavailable. So why not give it a try, as you have nothing to lose. Instead, you have a chance to gain new skills that can improve quality of life. Whether it’s mentally or physically, I will work alongside you until you have surpassed your goals. Just because you've developed a disability, either by birth or accident, it doesn't mean you can't live and enjoy life to the fullest. For more information, please get in touch via the links below!